This dilemma presented itself with the Texans needing to fly to Jacksonville for Sunday’s game against the Jaguars. Watson was healthy enough to play, but the flight there and back may have proved problematic, so the team decided to go full Madden and send him to Florida — a 12-hour straight shot down Interstate 10 — on a bus with strength and conditioning coach Luke Richesson, assistant trainer Uriah Myrie and a few other team officials.
From the sound of it, the trip wasn’t all that bad, apart from its length.
“It was smooth,” Watson said, per ESPN’s Sarah Barshop. “We just kind of hung out. Watched the film, recovery stuff, played a game, watched TV, slept. Stopped and got something to eat. That was pretty much it.”
Teammate J.J. Watt sounded jealous and threatened to join Watson on the return trip after the Texans' 20-7 win over the Jaguars.
“It’s a tour bus. I’m sure he had some good food. Probably a bed you could lay down and sleep in,” Watt said. “Meanwhile, we were stuck in coach seats on an airplane. I may see if I can hop in on the way back with him. See if he can ice up some beer and have a good time.”
As told by NBC’s Peter King, the trip involved a stop for dinner Friday night at Fleming’s in Baton Rouge and a 9 a.m. Saturday arrival in Jacksonville. Then they made the return trip after the game, arriving in Houston early Monday morning.
“I felt good today, so I guess it was the right call,” Watson told King after the game.
Watson won’t have to go Greyhound for the Texans' next game, at home against the Dolphins on Thursday, and hopefully his injury will have healed before Houston has to travel to Denver on Nov. 4: That’s a 15-hour drive.
“I was cool with it,” Watson said of his long trip to Jacksonville. “Whatever it takes to get me down here to be able to be with my teammates and be able to play and do what I do and help this team win, I’m up for it.”
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